As holiday shopping madness hits full stride, one longstanding entertainment powerhouse seems to have taken a backseat. Since launching in North America on Nov. 18, marking the release of Nintendo’s sixth home console, the Wii U has sold some 700,000 units. That's a far cry from the gaming giant's goal of moving 3.5 million Wii consoles, including the last of the six-year old Wii, by year's end. What gives?
With the arrival of the Nintendo Wii in 2006, the system's simple interface and the appeal of packed-in software hit Wii Sports, the legendary videogame company struck a chord with audiences the world over. With one fell swoop, Nintendo undid years of complexity that had scared so many away from gaming, replaced with intuitive motion controls and an interface that was easy to recognize and understand. This was in no small part thanks to simplified bowling and tennis mini-games.
Finally, games had come out of the basement to sit with the rest of the family. It was fun. Families across the world gathered to play Wii, which became synonymous with Wii Sports the way “Nintendo” became synonymous with Super Mario Bros.--26 years ago.